Medical Aesthetics News 

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Medical aesthetics trends for 2016 Karen Ellithorne surveys experts’ opinions on what the medical aesthetics sector has in store for the coming year. Ten years ago, it was only celebrities and the extremely wealthy who opted for aesthetic injectable procedures like toxins and fillers. More and more we are finding these treatments commonplace among everyday people, with acceptance of this form of anti-ageing intervention having dramatically evolved. Dr Alek Nicolic, an aesthetic practitioner based in the Cape, says that he expects to see a continuation in the growth in the popularity of toxins worldwide. He feels, however, that this will be more gradual in the developed countries, but foresees a big increase in growth in South Africa in 2016. “I feel that fillers are underutilised in South Africa for a number of reasons, including, but not limited to, unnatural results, lack of proper injecting technique of some of our local doctors, and consumer fear. With good training and education programmes, the techniques will improve and with it consumers’ results, thus resulting in a dramatic increase in dermal filler treatments,” predicts Nicolic. Dr Melanie Lambrechts, of The Centre of Wellness in Sandton, adds: “Dermal fillers are being used in new and exciting ways, such as in the eyebrow and chin areas, as well as the earlobes. Botulinum toxin injections are increasing, being used in a gentler and more subtle way that respects the fact that natural expression is desirable.” Threads She goes on to say that threads and sutures of many kinds are being added to these treatments to augment the lifting and tightening of areas such as the heavy jowl and mid-face area. “My prediction for 2016 is a sharp upward curve in the use of these resorbable threads, as more doctors are trained in their use and see the boosted effect that can be achieved with these powerful threads,” comments Lambrechts. Fat transfers Taking out fat from the abdomen and putting the healthy fat back into the face or breast is a growing industry, says Dr Duncan Carmichael from the Institute of Healthy Ageing In Cape Town. “This type of treatment can achieve results that other treatments can’t hope to copy. The new generation fat-removal machines make fat extraction easy and non-painful. Although you are advised to take the day off from work, this is almost becoming a lunch-time procedure,” he says. “Fat that is transferred back into the skin also comes with growth factors and stem cells. “After two months the results do not just plump up the skin but give a glow to an older skin from the transferred stem cells. This is a treatment to watch in 2016,” states Carmichael. Surgery perspective “The new trend in my practice is that younger patients are requesting facelifts. Patients aged 40 to 45 want to prevent major surgery later by starting younger,” says Dr Nerina Wilkinson, plastic surgeon from Renaissance Body Science Institute in Cape Town. “Liquid facelifts have become very popular for rejuvenating faces. Facial soft tissues are lost through ageing and need to be replaced through 3D volumetric treatments,” continues Wilkinson. “A conventional facelift removes flaccid skin to achieve a tightening around the lower face. However, rejuvenating the skin and restructuring the soft tissues, without pulling the facial tissues, achieves a more natural youthful appearance,” says Wilkinson. She notes that for patients who require extensive volume replacement, the trend is to combine regular hyaluronic gel fillers with a stem cell facelift of lipostructure, nano fat grafting and skin tightening with resurfacing lasers. “Nano fat injection is the latest advancement and concept in fat grafting. Studies have shown that stem cells in the nano fat solution are responsible for skin rejuvenation and are a great advancement in wrinkle treatment. Nano fat grafting is used in all surgical face and brow lifting, crow’s feet, forehead lines, smokers’ lines and acne scarring treatments. This technique improves the outcome of all facial treatments and facial surgery can now be even less invasive,” Wilkinson explains. In some patients, where volumising techniques are not sufficient, then sub-dermal threads can be placed to lift the tissues in conjunction with the other 3D treatments to achieve a 4D lift. “In my opinion, threads should be used with a volumising treatment for an optimal result,” advises Wilkinson. Peels Within the peels sector of aesthetics there is a trend to place stronger peels (TCA medium depth peels) deeper into the skin by flushing them down the holes made by derma-rollers, according to Carmichael. “In the past this was seen as a bad idea, as there was a fear that the TCA peel in the dermis of the skin was too much of an irritant and would cause itching and hypersensitivity under the skin. This fear seems to have melted away and people are pushing peels deeper and harder to stimulate collagen strengthening reactions,” he says. “However, on the other hand, there is a quiet movement that maintains that less is more if done regularly. They believe that regular, gentle skin peels in combination with other stimulating procedures are not only a pleasant experience but will slowly rebuild an ageing skin. I think this is the direction in which the peel industry should be moving,” advises Carmichael. Mesotherapy Carmichael feels that there is still room for growth in the mesotherapy sector, however it has unfortunately been flattened by the excitement around needling techniques of the skin and PRP (platelet-rich plasma) growth factor injections. Ana Engelbrecht from AnaClinical says the use of pre-mixed, clever combinations of active ingredients in a sterile ampoule is the trend for 2016. “This will allow the professional to save time, achieve better results and, hopefully, re-ignite the industry’s interest in the benefits of mesotherapy.” Skin needling in conjunction with peptides Says Wilkinson: “When collagen is broken down, short segments called peptides are formed. These ‘mini proteins’ are active and help restore the skin by sending a signal to your skin that it is damaged and needs to make new collagen. “Applying peptides directly to your skin is a way to trick your skin into thinking that it has lost collagen recently and needs to make more. Therefore skin products that contain signal peptides are effective in improving the appearance of fine lines by stimulating the formation of new collagen and regenerating the skin. This is a trend in cosmeceuticals that I expect to see grow in 2016. “For a supercharged effect of these collagen-boosting proteins, they can be applied in conjunction with pen-needling, a trend that began in 2014 and continues to still be very popular, for enhanced penetration of actives and a noticeable more youthful and brighter skin,” suggests Wilkinson Vitamin infusions High-dose vitamin infusions, as an alternative to oral supplementation, have become the rage and have started to make their way to our local markets. “For an infusion, vitamins are added to a solution containing the same salt concentration as your blood to aid absorption and take about 20 to 30 minutes to infuse,” says Dr Kamlen Pillay of Wembley Clinic in Cape Town. “The doctor will prescribe a cocktail of vitamins indicated for the patients’ needs and it seems that people do get an immediate dramatic effect after the treatment. However, there are no proper controlled studies on these treatments as yet,” he cautions.   On the skincare front, Carmichael says the main ingredient in vitamin drips is Glutathione. “This will help with pigment reduction, but, like any pigment treatment, the results are not permanent and you need to consider how much you are spending and how much benefit you are getting.” The clients of 2016 are well informed and have done their research with regards to aesthetic treatments. They are usually visiting an aesthetic clinic on the referral of a friend or colleague who has had a treatment with a good result. “It’s our role as trained clinician to put it all together in a package that makes both financial and scientific sense, as well as bringing in the aesthetic and artistic goal of natural-looking facial enhancement,” concludes Lambrechts.
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